Los Angeles Firm Inc. Magazine July/Aug 2016 - Page 61

Unlimited Style by Maura Declercq-Mindrila All’s fair in love, war and makeup! “How do I look?” A dangerous question, I dared to ask my associate Lia right before a business meeting with makeup-artist extraordinaire Louise; a beautiful business woman who is almost twice my age but manages to look ever so youthful. Lia immediately started nodding and as I saw her face change she said: “Well, you look fabulous, just a bit tired.” Long hours spent in front of a computer and chain-network-partying will do that to a workaholic. So my reflex was to immediately take out my loyal heavy duty concealer by Makeup Forever and frantically attempt to hide these dark shadows, silent witnesses of my lack of sleep. Then, on the way to Café Paris in Hamburg, where the meeting took place, I started wondering: is makeup such a powerful tool, that it can make or break a whole look and add or take away years off a person’s face? Does your makeup determine whether you look good or not? And if so, are there universal makeup rules you have to follow in order to look good? Can’t you just express your personality through makeup and be considered beautiful regardless of having followed the rules? And what about makeup trends? “Being a stylist, I know image is everything. Style speaks before you do, so your style must match your personality and whatever it is you wish to express. There are rules, proportions, color schemes that must be respected in order to make a look work for you, for the rest, all is fair, as long as you remain true to yourself. Makeup on the other hand should match your style.” I told Louise. I had it all figured out, but started to wonder if reducing makeup to an accessory of style wasn’t just too simplistic? Later on in the meeting, a heated conversation took place about beauty trends we loved and the ones we didn’t think looked good on anyone. I expressed my horror about the enormously popular ‘Instagram-Eyebrows’, you know, these thick, heavily painted-on upside-down moustaches which start from nothing and end up very dark at the tails. “Sure, they look good in pictures and well...it is a look, but I have never seen them do anything good for any face in real life”, said Louise. “This technique has actually been around for quite a while now and has been used in the drag queen world, along with the contouring technique for example, that is equally popular nowadays.” Louise added. Then why on earth are these old caterpillar eyebrows and drag-looks considered beautiful and modern on young girls, even if they don’t look good in real life according to a professional MUA? The answer is as simple as it is complex. Louise argued: “Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, so one could say it is a subjective matter, but science has proven there are features we, humans find universally beautiful, like symmetry for example.” “Another aspect we have to take into account”, I continued, while thinking about what she had just said, “is: our viral, technological world, where originality and individuality become rare. If something looks good in pixels, it spreads like wildfire and becomes a mainstream trend before you know it.” Louise remarked: “This would have never been possible 20 years ago, when there were strict makeup rules, which needed to be followed à la lettre. The big brands and designers dictated the fashion-rules and trends of the season top-down through the classic channels, the masses followed. Now, with the digital revolution, it’s not uncommon to see bottom-up influences: streetstyle insp ires trends on the runway.” Surely this is a new reality with a major impact on the means of self-expression. As we both left the café together, we came to the conclusion that as long as you respect your complexions and facial features, stay true to your original, creative self and celebrate your uniqueness, there are no rules anymore. You can never go wrong by expressing your true self! So, in love, war, fashion and makeup...all is fair! Maura Declercq-Mindrila JULY/AUGUST 2016 LOS ANGELES FIRM INC MAGAZINE | 61